MTPR

Tina Oliphant

The Libby eagle sits above downtown Libby, Montana.
Nicky Ouellet

In about a year, the Environmental Protection Agency will leave Libby, where it’s worked for the last two decades to clean up asbestos contamination, a lethal byproduct leftover from W.R. Grace’s vermiculite mine. But locals in Lincoln County say the EPA packing up doesn’t necessarily mean cleanup work is done.

BNSF Railway is promoting Libby as an area ripe for new rail-reliant development. The Kootenai Business Park is one of three industrial sites nationwide BNSF is spotlighting this year.

BNSF’s Certified Sites program identifies and promotes areas it deems “shovel-ready” for new businesses to set up shop. The designation is based on an evaluation of environmental standards, available utilities and existing infrastructure. It’s meant to lower risk for companies looking to develop quickly in an area that can speedily ship goods to market.

Downtown Libby, MT.
libbymt.com

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today it is giving final approval to the Libby Superfund asbestos cleanup program. Work to clean up the town started about 15 years ago.

Brett McCully, Director of Operations for Lincoln County Port Authority

Libby and Troy are beginning a campaign to re-brand themselves as places to live, visit and invest in – trying to shake off more than a decade-old economic shadow.

"We’re building on some past efforts from local organizations," Tina Oliphant of Libby & Troy 2020 Initiative said.